Of course there is ruthlessness throughout history and you can't blame any one people for it: a peculiar thing about all our various mythologies - each of them horizon bound - is that love is reserved for the in-group and disdain, hatred, and brutality for the out-group. "So with this breaking of horizons as we... Continue Reading →
A recent study on antidepressants has shown that the drugs have some serious side effects: those taking certain prescriptions could lose their sex drive. It sounds like the whole nation's sexuality is under a threat as, according to the statistics, one in ten Americans takes antidepressants. And it's not only libido people are losing -... Continue Reading →
I was recently talking with a young man about his anxiety, which he experiences as extreme. When I asked him what the anxiety was about, he didn’t know. When I suggested that we become curious about it and explore what it might be about, he told me that it was so extreme, it must be “biochemical.” This meant to him that the anxiety could not be understood in a psychological way, but had to be dealt with as part of his “illness.” I acknowledged to him that anxiety certainly involves biochemistry, but suggested that there are also experiences and interpretations of experience that trigger the biochemistry into action. For example, if he experienced someone pointing a firearm in his direction, he would likely experience an intense biochemical process within his body, but the experience would not be “just biochemical.” If people are going to understand themselves and work through emotional problems, it is essential that they get curious about their experiences and reflect on what might be triggering them. Sometimes such curiosity or reflection results in getting valuable messages from those experiences, or at other times, it involves identifying a mistake that triggered the emotional experience, which then allows for resolution. To use the simple example of the threat perceived from the firearm, one might either take quick action to avoid being shot, or in another situation perhaps observe more carefully and notice a movie is being filmed and that the firearm being pointed is just a prop.